Companies placed 0.6% fewer orders to U.S. factories in April for the second straight month of decline.
Demand for so-called core capital goods, such as heavy machinery and computers, dropped 2.1 percent in April. That followed a 2.3 percent decline in March.
Core capital goods are a good proxy for business investment plans. The declines suggest companies may be worried about a weaker U.S. job market, which could crimp consumer spending. They may also fear the worsening European debt crisis and slower growth in China could slow demand for U.S. exports.
Read more at OregonLive.com.